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Entries in Karthika Gupta (3)


Summer Guide 2013: Greening Your Summer Travel

Photo by Karthika Gupta of Memorable Jaunts.The official start of summer might be a couple weeks away, but when it comes to school, summer vacation has arrived! You can feel the excitement in the air. Everywhere you turn, you hear folks talking about their summer travel plans.

However, tourism and travel are a serious environmental threat - particularly due to air travel. You can minimize it some by taking road trips, but smog and pollution due to car emissions is also of concern. While eliminating summer travel is not likely, there are some simple steps you can take to minimize the effect of your summer travel on the environment.
  • Have a staycation: While not all families want to skip summer vacations, a lot of them are opting for staycations especially during the peak times of summer vacations like Independence Day. Not only does this reduce the stress of planning a summer break during peak travel dates, it also allows you to discover or (rediscover) local attractions. If you really want to shake things up, try hiking in a local state park or camping at a forest preserve for an away-from-home feeling. You get the experience of trying something new and spending time as a family, close to home.

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Ask the Expert: Taking Better Photos With Your iPhone

Naperville-based photographer Karthika Gupta shares with us why she loves her iPhone and some tips for how you can take better pictures with your own. 

I remember being so excited about buying my first cell phone. It was soon after I started working at my first job about 15 years ago. I was traveling for work and on one trip, landed at New York way past midnight due to flight delays. I had no way to get ahold of my husband to tell him I was OK. Needless to say, the moment I got back to Chicago, we went and bought a cell phone. It was beautiful, black and HUGE. But it represented freedom!

Of course phones today are much more than devices you use for calls. They provide entertainment and shopping assistance. They can help you keep track of your finances, stay connected with social media and find a new address, too. But mostly importantly, phones have cameras! This recent image from a wedding I photographed says it all: Can you see the image within the image within the image?

Being a professional photographer, I love my DSLR and my professional lens that I use for my work. But for day-to-day life, I don’t want to lug 20 pounds of equipment around everywhere I go. Besides, sometimes I just don’t want the attention. And if your kids are anything like mine, the moment they see the camera, its “silly face” mode.

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Creating Fun Times During The Dark Dreary Winter Months

Winter officially begins in just over a week. But the sun is already setting shortly after 4 p.m. For those of us who work outside the house, it feels like we leave home when it’s dark and come home when it’s dark. Can you imagine how the little ones must be feeling? The gloomy days seem to get most of us down and the energy levels sure feel really low. How do you keep little hands and minds busy and active when you are cooped up inside?

A late fall picnic in Chicago. Photo by Memorable Jaunts.Well, here is a list of activities you can do inside as well as outside that can keep the energy high and sanity levels in check for both kids and adults alike.

* Bring the outdoors inside: There seem to be no dirth of dry twigs and branches around the yard. Go on a scavenger hunt with the kids and gather some twigs and small branches to bring back inside. Take an old blanket or a sheet and pretend to build a fire with the dry branches. Make it complete with roasted marshmallows and campfire songs for a fun evening. If you have space, put up a small tent in the living room and let the kids sleep in it for a complete outdoor experience.

* Research: If your kids are old enough to play on the computer, take a poll on a country, food item, animal or bird that they have never heard of or seen before and get them to do a mini-project on it. Kids love getting to use the computer like adults do and at the end of this activity, they have learnt something completely new and different. Keep it short to five to seven facts about the topic – don’t make it feel like school!

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